Inside Story

Should the Tokyo Olympics go ahead?

Tokyo to remain under a state of emergency due to the COVID pandemic until a month before the games.

The reality of a fourth COVID-19 wave is raising questions about July’s Tokyo Olympics.

On July 23, if all goes according to plan, arguably the world’s biggest sporting event will get under way, albeit under the dark shadow of coronavirus.

The Olympic torch is being relayed across Japan, but there are growing calls for the games to be cancelled.

The Doctors Union says it is dangerous to go ahead with it, and the Asahi Shimbun newspaper, one of the games’ sponsors, says the decision to carry on is unwise.

Opinion polls say a majority of Japanese do not want to host it at this time and there have been protests on the streets.

But the organisers and the government are confident they will be able to pull it off.

So, can they succeed in hosting a safe Olympics?

Presenter: Mohammed Jamjoom


Ryusei Takahashi – National correspondent for The Japan Times and lead reporter on the Tokyo Games

Nalin Mehta – Social scientist and Olympic historian